(Rome) The Luthermania has dominated the geographical axis of Berlin-Munich-Rome for several months. Yesterday, Pope Francis was even visited by Martin Luther in the Vatican, at least by a statue of the "reformer". Such a form of representation is otherwise only given to saints in the Vatican. A distant premonition of what is coming?
Yesterday, Pope Francis received the participants of an ecumenical pilgrimage in collaboration with some German bishops "With Luther to the Pope".
Francis said to them,
"What unites us is much more than what separates us!"
"At the end of this month I will, according to God, go to Lund in Sweden, and together with the Lutheran World Federation, we will commemorate the beginning of Luther's reformation five hundred years ago. At the same time, we will thank the Lord for fifty years of official dialogue between Lutherans and Catholics. An essential part of these commemorations will be to look at the future, with regard to a common testimony to today's world, which is so hungry for God and his mercy. "
"Dear young friends, I encourage you to be witnesses of mercy. As theologians advance the dialogue in the field of doctrine, may you continue to seek opportunities to meet, to get to know you better, to pray together, and to offer your help to each other or to persevere for those who are in distress. If you are free from any prejudice and rely entirely on the gospel of Jesus Christ, who proclaims peace and reconciliation, you will become genuine protagonists of a new stage on this path which ultimately leads to full communion, with God's help."
More remarkable than the words of the papal greeting was a photograph published by Vatican Radio, together with the report on the pilgrimage "With Luther to Rome". It shows a red Luther statue with the pope. The image was spread by the Reuters Press Agency And gives the visual impression that the Pope would bless Luther.
Text: Giuseppe Nardi
Image: Vatican Radio / Reuters (Screenshot)
Trans: Tancred email@example.com